To teachers at back in the 1960s, Minka Disbrow was the warm, wonderful manager of the school cafeteria who made special lunches for them -- and sometimes even shared her recipes.
It's likely that few, if any, of the teachers -- and certainly none of the students -- knew of the violence and heartbreak that had marred Disbrow's youth.
Raped as a teenager, Disbrow became pregnant and was sent by her family to a home for unwed mothers. There she gave birth to a blonde, dimpled daughter whom she named Betty Jane. A month later, in keeping with the times, the baby was placed for adoption.
For several years, the adoption agency provided Disbrow with updates about the welfare of the daughter she had longed to keep. Then the agency's management changed, and Disbrow heard no more -- until 2006, when she received a phone call from a grandson she didn't know she had.
His mother, now named Ruth Lee, was searching for her biological parents, the man said. The family had petitioned the court for Lee's adoption records and then located Disbrow through the Internet.
A month later, mother and daughter were reunited for the first time in 77 years.
Today, Disbrow, now 100 and living in San Clemente, remains in close touch with her daughter, grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Read the complete story and see a slideshow of photos in Huffington Post Los Angeles.
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